S Sinoti; G Venditti, M Pratichetti, D Halangahu, R Trevisan; A Chiesa, T Tebaldi; A De Marchi, C Festuccia, L Leibson, Q Geldenhuys, J Sole, E Caffini, Mauro Bergamasco, A Van Schalkwyk.
Substitutes: A Manici, M Aguero, L Redolfini, F Cazzola, F Ferrarini, A Chillon, P Buso, A Benettin
Michael Bradley knows the buck stops with him when it comes to Edinburgh's on-field business, but his focus is as much on key performance indicators as overall results.
Naturally the head coach would prefer to be anticipating tomorrow's meeting with Italian newcomers Zebre with two wins safely secured but, for all that there have already been some unexpected turns of events, he believes they are essentially back on track. "Probably two out of three would be a fair return," was his assessment of what would represent a decent start to his team's RaboDirect PRO12 campaign. "We lost one we thought we'd win at home against Munster then Cardiff away was always going to be difficult and we won that, so we got it back straight away.
"There are other indicators to produce the results. You look at the quality of the performance at the lineout, the scrum, the intensity in the tackle, our ability to put away chances, to create chances. That's what we're looking at. The results are fair game to have a discussion about but it's how you get there really and the consistency levels that are needed is what we're working on to make that happen. Last year in the Rabo we weren't able to keep our level of performance up and so this year there's a determined effort to change that."
Towards that end, his analysis is fairly encouraging. "On the first phase we're doing very well, on creating chances we're doing well, our tackle intensity and defence line structure are quite solid. You're looking at three individual errors for the tries conceded and, while in creating chances we're doing well, even if in terms of taking chances we're doing not so well. That's probably been the one we just need to keep working on and it's being patient around the ball."
Not that he can have too many complaints about the finishing power of one member of his squad. Tim Visser's try against Cardiff, following his hat trick in the opener, took him back to the place he has regularly occupied at the top of the league's scoring charts. He's scored 41 of the 126 tries PRO12 tries Edinburgh have registered since he joined, an astonishing statistic in a 15-man game, but for all that he is keen to see others contribute, Bradley's instinct is to enjoy that rather than agonise over any down-side.
"We're only two matches into the season and last year he was ever present because he wasn't involved with the internationals so it's distorted a little bit there," the coach observed. "He is a quality finisher and we have the ability to play an expansive game so therefore our wingers will score tries. I don't think we're over-reliant on him but he does have a nose for a score."
Beyond that, Bradley has indicated dissatisfaction with the number of penalties conceded but has hinted that he feels that had more to do with the referee than his players against Munster and that the soft penalties awarded to Cardiff in the first half last weekend were "uncharacteristic" of what fans can expect in the weeks to come.
Projecting towards what is to come, he has to carefully manage his resources and the changes to his team once again reflect that. His growing confidence in the quality of the props he has available means that John Yapp and Willem Nel return in place of Scotland internationals Allan Jacobsen and Geoff Cross, while in the back-row Ross Rennie swops with Roddy Grant and Netani Talei makes his first start of the season.
The only difference to the back line that faced Cardiff is that Matt Scott is included. The 21-year-old starts his first season as a full-time player having been capped while still on an apprentice contract last term and, again, Bradley is wary. "It's Matt's first start in 10 weeks so we just want him to ease in and do the basics right," he said.
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